|Honda Strengthens R&D Capability in Asia Oceania Region By Establishing Automobile R&D Center in Thailand|
|BANGKOK, Thailand, October 31, 2005 --- Honda R&D Co., Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of Honda responsible for research & development activities, today announced that it had obtained permission to establish an automobile R&D company in the Kingdom of Thailand to strengthen Honda’s ability to quickly respond to the ever diversifying needs of customers in rapidly growing Asian automobile markets.
A new Honda subsidiary, Honda R&D Asia Pacific Co., Ltd., will be established on December 1, 2005 and the new R&D center is planned to become operational in 2007. The new company also plans to build a new test course in the future. The total investment is estimated to be approximately 2.4 billion baht (approximately 7 billion yen).
In addition to the development of locally-produced parts, the new subsidiary will conduct a wide range of product development activities locally, including product planning, styling research, and testing of complete cars. Through the establishment of a local R&D center in Thailand as a base, Honda is committed to strengthening product development capabilities throughout the Asia Oceania region, including ASEAN countries, Southwest Asia, East Asia, and Oceania, and to conduct R&D activities that take root in each local market.
Previously in Thailand, Honda opened a motorcycle R&D center, Honda R&D Southeast Asia Co., Ltd., in December, 2004. With the establishment of its new auto R&D center, Honda will accelerate regional research and development functions and technology transfer in that country.